American Natto? Fermented Soybean and its Health Benefits
Vinegar-like odor, slimy texture, and bland tasting. These are words that you would hope to never ever use when describing your food. However if you take a trip to Japan, you might find yourself trying natto, a....unique food. Natto is fermented soybean, and is a food that the Japanese enjoy, and really only the Japanese. With the words just used to describe this food, it’s not surprising the rest of the world isn't jumping on the bandwagon to incorporate this food in their diet.
Natto in a Sushi Roll. Popular in Japan. Kind of sticky and for the majority will need an acquire taste.
But maybe we should? Nutritionally speaking, natto is packed full of good stuff that our body needs like plenty of protein, lower amounts of calories than beef, and has vitamin K. With these nutritional powers, natto is a recipe for decreasing risk of heart disease and cancer and helping regulate calcium in our bodies. This information is supported by Dr. Andrew Weil from the Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona.
Soybeans and United States Connection
Surprisingly, over 50% of the soybeans actually comes from the US Midwest. Not surprisingly, many people in this region haven't heard of it, no less tested it. Jay Goos, a science professor from North Dakota State University, discovered natto while researching soybeans resistance to iron deficiencies. He decided to take it upon himself to eat natto everyday for two months as part of an experiment. He was never able to actually acquire a taste for this funky food, but tolerates. He still continues to eat it today. He doesn’t predict natto will ever catch on or be big anywhere else, we will leave it to the Japanese to enjoy!